No Obama effect for Cuba’s economy so far

Cuba has approved 83 foreign investments projects worth more than USD 1.5 billion since March 2014 that is just USD 700 million a year, quite far from the official target of USD 2 billion a year. Since US President Barack Obama has reestablished diplomatic relations which had been broken for 53 years, his administration has eased trade with Cuba with a view to “charting a new course in (bilateral) relations.”

Despite enthusiastic statements from US officials who depicted Obama’s move as “historic steps”, Cyceon’s initial assessment of an “unlikely Cuba effect for US business” as soon as December 2014 has been confirmed twice. Not only just a few US businesses have benefited from the ongoing US normalization with Cuba, but the Cuban economy itself has gained little from it so far.

Indeed, as Cyceon wrote in March 2016, US companies have likely chosen to wait till Election Day before opting for any long-term business involvement with Cuba. Somehow similar with Iran’s, Cuba’s normalization process by the US could be questioned according to who becomes the next POTUS.

Despite stronger relationships with countries like Russia, China or France, Cuba still has many challenges to meet in order to modernize its economy enough and attract foreign investment in line with the ambitious goal set by its government.